An exotic theory, which attempts to unify the laws of physics by proposing the existence of an extra fourth spatial dimension, could be tested using a satellite to be launched in 2007.
Such theories are notoriously difficult to test. But a new study suggests that such hidden dimensions could give rise to thousands of mini-black holes within our own solar system ? and the theory could be tested within Pluto?s orbit in just a few years.
Black holes of various masses are thought to have sprung into existence within 1 second of the big bang, as elementary particles clumped together at extreme energies. But Einstein’s theory of general relativity predicts the smallest of these “primordial” black holes should have already evaporated, through a quantum process called Hawking radiation.
But according to some alternative theories that attempt to unify gravity with quantum mechanics, such as string theory, small black holes could still exist. That is because these theories propose extra spatial dimensions, which alter the way gravity behaves on small scales. – newsci